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12-16 Artillery Lane
Here's a clue for newbies hoping for an audience with the Mayor: like Narnia for grown-ups, the portal to his magical hidden kingdom is disguised as a common household object – in this case a fridge at The Breakfast Club on Bishopsgate. Don't be a scaredy cat! Step inside and head downstairs to discover a chilled bunker that comes on like a Montana lumberjack's shack with moonshine aplenty on tap. Butch beers, punchy rum puncheons, lip-pucker sours, fiddled-with fizz, Pisco disco drinks and pimped-up Martinis are much cleverer than their tosh titles might suggest: A Mary Berry Kinda Gateau; Aloe, Is It Me You're Looking For; Peat-Nut Butter-Cup (bourbon, Mozart dark chocolate, peanut butter and Laphroaig spray). In the same spirit of silliness, we rate the Mayor's quesadilla platters, pulled pork sliders and vodka-battered calamari – surely the cat's whiskers.
London's best restaurants and bars for dates
12-16 Artillery Lane
Liverpool Street Tube Station 115m
Liverpool Street Station 469m
Liverpool Street 192m
Mon-Sat 5pm-12M (Wed-Fri 3.30pm- Sat 12N- ) Sun 12N-10.30pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 4
As I write this the morning after a few “quiet drinks” in The Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town, head a-throbbing, I understand why the food upstairs is of the type I would call “stomach lining”. You would be very wise to eat there before descending into the cavernous basement of this beautifully bonkers little bar as, once in, there is no natural light and there are no clocks; the Bermuda Time Triangle could easily gobble up your night. Despite being barely past 6 on a week night, the place is already busy but we manage to snag some bar stools and settle in, a little too easily. In fact this is a great spot to watch the expert bar staff ply their blending trade, which they do with skill and innovation. I am asked if I have ever tried a Cosmo with egg white and would I like to? The answer is No (I am suspicious of food in drinks, and likewise drinks in food, the result of overindulgence in sherry trifles in my childhood no doubt) but I appreciate being asked. The barman charmingly knocks up an off-the-cuff mocktail for our pregnant friend and the rest of us work our way through a fair number of the cocktail list, which is short enough to be unintimidating but long enough to cover the classics as well as a few originals (all around the usual London price of £8-9). I'd definitely recommend a trip here with friends or dates but be prepared for it to be busy and to wait until you are admitted through the secret entrance (I am not going to blow the cover on this, although it is probably now an open secret). And be warned, you will need paracetamol to hand in the morning.
Having wandered around and round in circles in search of this hidden bar, we finally tracked it down and were told that there was a 20-30minute wait before we could enter. Once we were finally escorted into the bar I couldn't really understand why we had to wait as it was practically dead!
A little peeved by this, I ordered a drink and instantly relaxed into the surroundings. The dimly lit bar, delicious cocktails and friendly service made me forget about the unnecessary wait instantly!
This would be a great bar to go to on a date or with a small group of friends looking for a few quiet drinks out.
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